Hurricane Isaias is continuing to move in a general northwestward motion as it approaches Florida's southeast coast. According to the 2 p.m. advisory, some decrease in forward speed is expected for the next day or so, followed by a north-northwestward motion by late Sunday.Location: 140 miles southeast of Fort Lauderdale


Maximum sustained winds: 75 mph


Present movement: northwest at 12 mph


The forecast track shows the center of Isaias will move over the Straits of Florida tonight, and approach the southeast coast of Florida early Sunday morning. Isaias is then forecast to move near or along the the east coast of the Florida Sunday and Sunday night.


The St. Johns County Commission declared a local state of emergency on Saturday morning due to the approach of Hurricane Isaias.


The declaration allows the county to access resources and assistance to prepare for an emergency weather event. St. Johns County Administration and Emergency Management staff are monitoring the storm and are working with a variety of local and state agencies to prepare for its impacts.


The the St. Johns County Emergency Operations Center Hotline is offering more information at 824.5550.


Later Saturday, the county announced that beaches would be closed for swimming, starting at 12:01 a.m. Sunday. The release says: "Swimming will remain prohibited until further notice, as indicated by double red flags posted along the beaches. As Hurricane Isaias is projected to begin impacting St. Johns County Sunday morning, residents and visitors are encouraged to avoid the beaches until conditions improve."


St. Johns County is currently under a Tropical Storm Warning and a Storm Surge Watch. The community is advised to prepare for potential tropical storm impacts as early as 8 a.m. Sunday, according to a release from the county.


The release said there are no plans open shelters: "While the projected impacts do not currently warrant an evacuation or the opening of shelters, the community is projected to experience high winds and high water in low-lying locations and areas that are particularly vulnerable and prone to flooding.


"In addition, the potential for tornadoes also exists with the arrival of Hurricane Isaias. It is recommended that St. Johns County residents and businesses take all necessary precautions and expedite the preparation of homes and structures, as necessary."


On the forecast track, the center of Isaias will move over northern Andros Island during the next few hours and move near or over Grand Bahama Island in the Northwestern Bahamas later today.


Maximum sustained winds are near 80 mph, with higher gusts.


Hurricane-force winds extend outward up to 25 miles from the center and tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 115 miles.


Around the state, authorities said they have prepared shelters but didn't expect to have to evacuate people.


"The most important thing we want people to do now is remain vigilant," said Gov. Ron DeSantis.


Authorities in North Carolina ordered the evacuation of Ocracoke Island, which was slammed by last year’s Hurricane Dorian, starting Saturday evening. Meanwhile, officials in the Bahamas evacuated people on Abaco island who have been living in temporary structures since Dorian devastated the area, killing at least 70 people.


Isaias had maximum sustained winds of 85 mph (135 kph) Saturday morning and some strengthening was possible, the U.S. National Hurricane Center in Miami said. The storm was centered about 50 miles (85 kilometers) south of Nassau in the Bahamas and was moving northwest at 12 mph (19 kph). Forecasters said some decrease in its forward motion was expected.


Bahamian officials said they were concerned about a Category 1 storm hitting amid the coronavirus pandemic.


"The center of COVID-19 now is in Grand Bahama," the island’s minister, Sen. Kwasi Thompson, told government-run ZNS Bahamas. "No one wanted to see a situation where we are now facing a hurricane."


Paula Miller, Mercy Corps director for the Bahamas, told The Associated Press that people on Grand Bahama were still standing in line for gas on Saturday ahead of the storm.


"People are doing the best they can to prepare, but a lot of businesses still have not fully repaired their roofs or their structures" since Dorian hit, she said. "Even a lower level storm could really set them back," she said.


A hurricane warning was in effect for Florida's east coast from Boca Raton, just north of Miami, about 150 miles (241 kilometers) north to the Volusia-Flagler county line. A hurricane watch was in effect from Hallendale Beach to south of Boca Raton.